On our last day in Portugal, there was much to do: purchasing gifts for family and friends and a pilgrimage to the Café-Restaurante Martinho da Arcada. The café is another favorite Pessoa haunt, with a table reserved for him in perpetuity. As the café was in the Praça do Comércio, we decided to end our Portuguese journey where most tourists would have begun, in the Lisboa Story Center. Continue reading
Better than two months have passed since our last days in Portugal. On March 30, we left the Alentejo to head back to Lisbon, a short trip that could easily accommodate a stop or two along the way. The taxi driver who drove us to the rental car office when we’d first headed out from Lisbon was from the Alentejo. He spoke to us in rapid English about sites we shouldn’t miss. (Indeed, it seemed to us he’d have preferred we didn’t bother with the Alentejo at all.) Before we disembarked, he wrote out a “must-see” site on a torn off scrap of paper: Ruínas Romanas de Miróbriga, ruins of a Roman city dating from the 1st century A.D. Continue reading
When we get a chance to travel, we try to split our stay between city and country time. With the latter, we place a premium on walking. In Portugal’s Rota Vicentina, we hit the jackpot beyond our wildest dreams. I recognize I’m spouting cliché after cliché, but in this case, beyond a few bits of information about the area, the photographs, I hope, will tell the tale. Continue reading
The first photographs in the slideshow are of Aljezur. Aljezur, now inland, was a major port in the 15th century “before the river silted up.” [Rough Guide to Portugal] It is also the “crossover point of two major long-distance walking trails, the Via Algarviana” and the Rota Vicentina (Historical Way). [Rough Guide] Continue reading
Illustrious Gama, whom the waves obey’d,
And whose dread sword the fate of empire sway’d.
—Luís de Camões (from Os Lusíadas)
The Museu Coleção Berardo, described as “the main museum for modern and contemporary art in Portugal,” lured us to spend a day in the Lisbon parish of Belém. The Museu is housed in the vast Centro Cultural De Belém (Belém Cultural Center or CCB), which was “erected as a showpiece for Portugal’s 1992 presidency of the European Union.” [Time Out Lisbon, p. 98] Continue reading